A few years back I came across this Alien radio spot for the original London release back in 1979, something about this particular spot really struck a cord with me and sparked my imagination about what Alien must have been like to see on that opening weekend at the Odeon, Leicester Square. I love the urgency and specific nature of how the spot says “starts today, Odeon Leicester Square, late night show tonight and every night at 11:45PM”. That add must have just played during that one opening day of Alien, the one-off nature of the voice-over coupled with the haunting use of the Alien score really stuck with me over time and I’ve always wondered how much fun to it would have been to see it that day, especially in 70MM!
So as I was going through the Starburst back issues it was great to find this original advert for Alien playing at the Odeon, Leicester Square, which made me wonder what else was out there specifically about Alien playing at that one cinema where I’ve watched so many films over the years.
Starburst issue 14 -1979
Our good friend Alan Jones recently tweeted this picture from his invite archive, showing the original cast & crew screening with took place at the Odeon, Leicester Square Sunday 10th June and the first press screening which was up the road the Dominion in July. Note that both of those screenings were well in advance of the 6th September release for Alien.
Digging around I also found this very fun picture on Reddit of someone’s dad who managed the Alien premiere at the Odeon with a flamethrower and Sigourney!
And then there’s these two audience reaction pictures from Alien playing at the Odeon that I found on the stock picture website here.
Lots of scares, one bloke who looks very intense and one lady about to spark up a cigarette in the cinema!
So that’s a brief look at Alien at the Odeon, will post more if I every find anything else!